By 90Min
July 25, 2018

With every summer comes renewed hope for the season ahead, excitement over a host of new players to enter the fold and the anticipation of sweeping changes throughout the club which many hope will culminate in a change of fortune. 

For Liverpool and Daniel Sturridge, however, its a perpetual state of déjà vu which encapsulates hope, despair and a resignation that he is no longer the striker he once was. 


Yet despite the feeling of inevitability of him picking up another injury, the Reds must be willing to hold on to the hope that his, and their, fortunes have changed.

AFP Contributor/GettyImages

Since joining Liverpool in January 2013, the England international has picked up 14 separate injuries, amounting to 99 games missed and 567 days in the treatment room, according to Transfermarkt's numbers.

It displays a bleak projection of what could be around the corner, but for all of his injury history and your head telling you that he will spend more time on the sideline than on the pitch, it's the heart which is prepared to be broken for one more shot - one more season to rediscover the form which saw him set the league alight with 21 goals alongside Luis Suarez in season 2013/14. 

His talent knows no bounds and he is an asset any club would be fighting tooth and nail for. 

Although it is only pre season, his early showings for Liverpool have seen him firing on all cylinders, showing the sleek movement and awareness which makes him the perfect attacking option for Jurgen Klopp. 

The 28-year-old has featured in each of the Anfield outfit's five friendlies so far this summer, impressing in a deeper role, scoring on three occasions and showing an effortless connection with the club's new arrival Naby Keita. 

If he were a new signing, tongues would be wagging and expectations would be rising, and while you can never read too much into early season friendlies, the signs are certainly promising.

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A sentiment which is shared by Klopp, who said: “We’re not in doubt - and nobody was ever in doubt - about his quality. In this moment he looks really good, to be honest.

“The most physically strong player in the squad cannot play football like Daniel Sturridge and he has no possibility to be that, to be the marathon man of the team, but he can be a very decisive player. It’s a good moment and hopefully it will stay like that.”

With Roberto Firmino the only recognised player capable of leading the line to great effect, with Dominic Solanke, Divock Origi and Daniel Ings all failing to impress thus far, Sturridge could offer a level of quality which was unavailable to Klopp last season. 

Yet, with the void of a creative attacker yet to be filled following Philippe Coutinho's exit and a failed move for Nabil Fekir, their is also license for Sturridge to play behind the front three with less onus on him to start the press and avoid being the 'marathon man' as Klopp alludes to. 

This of course will all require careful management to balance his game time and maintain his fitness, but it will all be worthwhile if he is to make valuable contributions - predominantly off the bench - throughout the season as Liverpool look to compete on four fronts. 

OLI SCARFF/GettyImages

Ultimately the fact of the matter is if he were any ordinary player he would have been on his way out of Liverpool years ago, but the flashes of the Sturridge of old have triggered the hope that his fortunes may finally have changed. 


Sturridge is capable of conjuring moments of magic more often than not, so while Liverpool will be preparing for his torrid run of injuries to strike once more - hope should prevail that he can turn it all around in the final 12 months of his deal at Anfield.

After all, it is the hope that kills you...

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